Seth Rogen says the end of his professional relationship with former collaborator James Franco is "not a coincidence" in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations by multiple women against Franco in the last three years.
The writer and actor told Britain's Sunday Times that he will no longer be working with his co-star from movies like "Pineapple Express" and "The Interview." He also expressed remorse over a 2014 joke he made on "Saturday Night Live" in reference to Franco dating young girls after Franco apologized for having propositioned a 17-year-old girl on Instagram.
Further, Rogen responded to comments on Instagram last month by actor Charlyne Yi, who starred in "The Disaster Artist" with Franco. She labeled Franco a "predator" and said Rogen was "enabling" him.
"What I can say is that I despise abuse and harassment and I would never cover or conceal the actions of someone doing it, or knowingly put someone in a situation where they were around someone like that," Rogen told The Sunday Times. "However, I do look back at a joke I made on 'Saturday Night Live' in 2014 and I very much regret making that joke. It was a terrible joke, honestly. And I also look back to that interview in 2018 where I comment that I would keep working with James, and the truth is that I have not and I do not plan to right now."
He then added that the end of his professional relationship with Franco is "not a coincidence." The two have known each other for decades since starring together on the 1999 show "Freaks and Geeks."
Five women said in 2018 that Franco's behavior toward them was sexually inappropriate or exploitative. The actor told Stephen Colbert at the time that the accusations were "not accurate."
He settled lawsuits involving two of the women in February.
- Watch TODAY All Day! Get the best news, information and inspiration from TODAY, all day long.
- Sign up for the TODAY Newsletter!
Rogen said the situation has affected their friendship and then was asked if their personal relationship has also now ended.
"I don’t know if I can define that right now during this interview," he said. "I can say it, um, you know, it has changed many things in our relationship and our dynamic."
He was then asked if that has been a painful change.
"Yeah. But not as painful and difficult as it is for a lot of other people involved," he said. "I have no pity for myself in this situation."